The Importance of Tracking Non-Conformance Reports
Non-conformance reports are a main part of the Quality Management System. This is the tool to track all kinds of issues within the organization. The term is widely used for all kinds of issues from product deviations to things that went wrong during audits, as well as in a safety capacity, although in safety they are mainly called incidents or near-misses. However, most companies have the same kind of process to track them and manage them, although the data capture is obviously different. In the blog post, we will outline the importance of tracking non-conformance reports.
How To Create
We already touched upon the importance of making the process of creating NCRs as easy as possible. They are the lifeline to improve processes within the organization and are essential for finding mistakes. Filling in every single NCR allows the organization to find patterns in these NCRs and create sustainable solutions to prevent them from happening again. In order to increase the number of NCRs, it needs to be as easy as possible to file them.
Filing in NCRs can obviously be done on paper; however, this is such a cumbersome process that most people don’t file the NCR. They need to be able to locate the piece of paper somewhere within the company. Then they need to fill it in by hand and then drop it off at the right person. That person needs to key it into an Excel sheet in order to have an overview of everything that is happening. At the end of the month, the QHSE manager tries to make a consistent dashboard in Excel to report to management.
A slightly better option but still very labor-intensive is using WhatsApp. People can easily send a picture to the QHSE manager with a small description. However, the QHSE manager still needs to find a location to store the images and create some kind of report. They also then still need to key it all into an Excel sheet in order to make those somewhat functioning dashboards.
Having a proper cloud solution in place for NCR handling really brings the company to the next level. Allowing employees to create NCRs with the ease of snapping a picture with a mobile takes away almost any boundaries. This drives up the number of NCRs created, which is necessary to really find patterns in the NCRs. Also, these solutions allow for easy NCR management and follow-up. Having them registered and allowed to create the required CAPAs makes the PDCA Cycle almost seamlessly integrated into the organization. Furthermore, these solutions allow for instant analyses of the data.
Data to Improve Quality & Safety
To bring the QHSE management to the next level, having as much data as possible is key. Therefore, NCRs should be created in the easiest way possible. Having so much data at your disposal allows for great analysis. You can easily see which processes are going efficiently or which machine is generating too many deviations. It allows for great maintenance planning and process improvements.
From a safety perspective, we can find which topics should be used in awareness training. Also, we can find at which location most safety-related issues happen and focus more on those parts. Data gives all kinds of great patterns which we can use to improve the organization and really move the company way beyond simply being compliant.